Judge Finds Downey Couple Guilty Of Child Abuse Leading To 4-Month-Old’s Death

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com)   —  Authorities said a Superior Court judge on Thursday found a Downey couple guilty of inflicting child abuse on their 4-month-old daughter causing her death.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Raul A. Sahagun found Ashley Debra Jones, 26, guilty of second-degree murder and child abuse. Additionally, the judge found true that the defendant inflicted great bodily injury on the victim. Also, it was found true that Jones willfully caused and permitted the child to be injured and harmed and that injury and harm resulted in death.

Jones’ co-defendant, Johnathan Lucero, 26, was found guilty of felony child abuse in the same case. The judge also found true that Lucero willfully caused and permitted the child to be injured and harmed and that injury and harm resulted in death.

Sentencing for Jones and Lucero is scheduled for Nov. 15 at the Los Angeles County Superior Court. Jones is facing 15 years to life in state prison, while Lucero faces 10 years in state prison.

Deputy DA Franco Baratta, who prosecuted the case, said Jones, Lucero and their 4-month-old daughter were living in an apartment they shared with Lucero’s family.

RELATED LINK: Downey Parents Arrested In Murder Of 4-Month-Old Girl

On the morning of Dec. 31, 2013, Jones found the infant unresponsive and called a family member for help, the DA said. The family member called 911 and when paramedics arrived they took the child to the hospital, who was soon pronounced dead.

A day after the child’s death, Jones and Lucero were charged.

According to court testimony, the 4-month-old baby was beaten. She was malnourished and had skull fractures, cerebral contusions, multiple rib fractures, a lacerated liver, bruised lungs and contusions to her diaphragm.


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